tv Politics Public Policy Today CSPAN August 6, 2011 6:00am-7:00am EDT
are long-term unemployed are at record levels. it has not been nearly this i. the number is extremely high. it is particularly kerning, because one of the things that economic research has pretty consistently shown is the longer somebody is unemployed, the longer it takes to get them reemployed, so this is going to be a real challenge going forward. i'll give you some idea. the weeks of unemployment has basically doubled during this recession. it's gone from about five weeks to 10 weeks. and we're at the very high share of the long -- the people who are unemployed are unemployed for longer than a year. so these numbers are clearly very concerning. >> and you said they're historic numbers. >> yes, both in level, percent, almost any way you look at it,
yes. >> in the testimony i gave today, i mentioned a couple of categories where the numbers are disproportionately higher. i didn't put the numbers in, but wanted to review those. the african-american unemployment rate in this report is report by way of percentage? >> is 15.9%. >> what was it the month before? >> it actually declined .3%, but that's not really statistically significant. i would call it essentially unchanged. but that number alone, the african-american number for most of the last year seems like it's been in the 14 to 15 range, is that about right? >> yes, it's been probably over 15 for most of the time. >> i also mentioned a few categories. i just mentioned one more to get the number. those americans who are unemployed and have a high school diploma or less, what
number is that? >> the unemployment rate for those folks is 15%. >> and that's been there that high that long? >> yes. >> for a while. i wanted to ask you about -- i think because there are so many so many reports, so much data out there, sometimes it's hard for people to follow closely to keep it straight. we know that we get the unemployment rate -- it's derived from the so-called household survey. and those numbers haven't been very encouraging. and that household survey has indicated a weaker employment situation. can you talk about that, in terms of comparing the two sets of data and what that means, if anything, that would be relevant? >> sure, from month to month, you'll sometimes see different signals between the household
and the payroll, but i find that if you look at it over a slightly longer time period, say three months, they do tend to move together pretty well. so you don't typically get a conflicting picture for very long between the two. >> in terms of if you can just describe the survey of employers, how that's arrived at, that number. >> sure, the employer survey is an establishment survey, so what we're doing is we're surveying places of work, businesses, establishments, and it's a very large survey. in fact, it's something on the order of 440,000 establishments, but it represents something like 40 million people that we're counting directly every month. so it actually is a very large survey, so the number is really pretty accurate. but the drop act is we're surveying employers, so we're just looking at the number of people on payroll, what their
average hourly earnings are doing, etc. we want to get more rich detail, we go to the household survey where we collect demographic information about education and ethnicity. so the two together give you as complete a picture as we can of the labor market by month. >> thank you very much. vice chairman brady? >> i share chairman casey's concerns about the long-term unemployment. clearly longer without a job, the bigger challenge it is getting them back to work. other areas that continues to trouble me, because it's a sign of weakness in the labor market rather than strength is the labor force participation, how many people are actually in the labor force or actively participating. it's declined yet again. in july, it's about 63.9%. this is the lowest since the early 1980's, and it continues to stay there.
so just an editorial question, are we, commissioner, settling into a new norm where there are going forward going to be fewer people participating in the workforce and, therefore, higher unemployment rates? >> obviously i hope not. i don't know, but i can tell thaw so far in this recovery, we've really seen no recovery at all. that is something that's typically starting to rise at some point during a recovery, and i think as i noted before, i think that's an important phase of the recovery. we only start to get people entering back into the labor force. i think once that starts to happen, we may get a better idea of what the new norm will be, what the new labor force participation rate is going to be like. >> looks like it may take a
while, because the decline is twice that of any previous recession. any idea what the factors are for that lower participation rate? >> it's not obviously that this has been a long recession, and we've had a large number of unemployed. although they've stayed in the labor market a bit longer than they have in the past, we still had quite a few people exit the labor force. so i just think it's ther is invitity and length of the recession. >> at the current rate this month, for example, the 117,000 met jobs, just for the average person back home wondering how long we're going to be stuck in a tough economic time, at the current rate, 117,000 per month, how long would it take to regain the payroll jobs total we had prior to the recession? i understand it will be years. >> i don't want to be flip, but
117,000 we would never regain. you need 100,000 just to absorb the population growth so. really, if you're looking in terms of recovery, the way you should look at these numbers is how far above 130 we can get, and that's really the recovery. 117,000 still treading water, i think. >> thank you. yield back, chairman. >> congressman cummings. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. >> with regard to people in the labor market or coming back in, let's talk about those who are starting out. a few months ago, millions of our young people graduated from high school and college, and while many of them are pursuing higher education, and we've had
testimony before this committee in the past where young people were -- we were told that young people, many of them were basically kind of suspending going into the job market and actually dependent upon their parents and staying in school. i'm just wondering, what kind of pressure does the influx of job seekers place on the labor market, and what are the employment prospects for recent high school or college graduates? >> first of all, i think our data supports what you said, that the new entrance in the labor market are having a very difficult time finding work. if you look at something like the employment population ratio and break it out by age range, those members of the population
that are working age, that are -- let's say 25 and below, the unemployment ratio is very low and declined considerably during this recession. of course, the big concern, of course, is that at some point you feel like you're getting a generation of high school and college graduates who aren't finding work, and that could put a real strain on the labor market going forward. i would say it's something that we should be concerned about. >> you know, the significant part of the 2009 recovery act was the provision to aid state and local governments to protect jobs for teachers, firefighters, police officers, etc.. as we know, much of that aid is coming to an end. how is the state and local government job market trending, and how much are the trends in
this market contributing to the overall rise in unemployment? >> i would say, right now, in most industries, we are no longer losing jobs. we're at least holding constant. we're growing in sum. but one notable area where we do continue to lose jobs is in government employment. in particular with government employment and local government employment. they both lost significant numbers of jobs, more so than in most past resessions. probably with state government, it might be the biggest decline we've had ever during a recession. >> but it appears that less money will be going to the states. it's always puzzling to me, we hear these comments that we should not raise taxes on the richest of the rich during a fragile economy, but at the
same time, in my state, we've had to lay off people and we had furloughs, and i'm sure that's happening in a number of states. and yet these people, even on the hill, in the committee that i'm the ranking member over, we've got employees who have taken a 5% to 10% cut, and we've got federal employees who their wages have been frozen. in a fragile economy, by the way. and i'm just wondering, can you talk about this minnesota situation? you referenced it. tell me about that as it relates to state jobs. >> sure. we haven't produced official statistics yet for minnesota, but the governor's office has released the numbers that the state of minnesota laid off about 22,000 workers.
i believe they held on to 13,000, but that was a pretty significant layoff. that was, as i mentioned, that was pretty much the bulk of the decline in state employment this month. >> and we are about to -- we've got some folks who are getting ready to run out of unemployment benefits. it's predicted that those may have a .5% decrease in gpped. how might that affect this job situation? >> i don't want to speculate too much on that. certainly the unemployment insurance benefit is a real serious policy concern and such, but i'm not sure i wanted to try to make a connection between the two. >> thank you. >> commissioner, i wanted to look at some of the areas where there's been an increase,
trying to add some good news here. the private sector number is up , but let's call it good news, but not good enough. that number, i notices -- and just wanted to see if you have this information. i don't have it right in front of me, but i remember going back into the january to april period, we're getting at least three months that i can recall in a row where private sector job creation -- private sector job creation, or private sector job growth was above 220 three months in a row. it was like 220, 230, 240, somewhere in there. >> yeah, your memory is good. it averaged about 240,000 jobs per month over that period. >> basically january to april? >> that's right. >> and this month is a good number. i was also noticing, where we got growth -- in other words, the reason we got 154,000
private sector, and then if you net it out for the overall number, 117,000, healthcare up by 31,000, right? >> yes. >> retail trade up 26,000. >> manufacturing. >> manufacturing up 24,000. and mining up 9,000. the one that took the biggest hit, i guess, was government, and i guess that's all government, right? >> that's correct. i guess in terms of the private sector number, which i think is a pretty important number for us to watch, a deally what would we want? maybe not the ideal number, but what would be a healthier number? in other words, if we were averaging just on the private sector increase, 150,000, say 125,000 to 150,000 the next few months, would that be enough, or does the private number have
to be very close to what the overall number is? in other words, we know we can't recover on 117,000. we know wee got to get it closer, but any correlation between private sector growth and the health of the economy, or is it better to focus on the overall number? >> well, i think it's fine to focus on either one. obviously the private sector is giving you some idea of private sector job creation. whereas the government number is also important. it's an indication of government employment, but not quite the private sector. in terms of strong job growth, you know, we are so deep into job loss. we've really lost quite a few jobs and really fallen really behind that we really need really significant, significantly higher job growth than we've had to make a dent,
and even then it would probably take years. to recover the jobs. >> i was noticing as well the manufacturing numbers was up. i guess part of that, or a good part of that is automobile manufacturing. is that up? >> yeah, this month motor vehicles were about half that. >> ok. i was wondering if you think that this part of the manufacturing number going up, the automobile manufacturing number, is that partly -- is the rebound, i should say, partly the result of supply issues as it relates to what happened in japan, or do you think there's any way to attribute it to that? >> yeah, i think it would have been hard to attribute, to figure out much of the impact of japan all along, but i do think that the evidence now is, if you look at something like motor vehicle inventories, that whatever japan affected before, it's now out of the system, that inventories are back up to
normal levels. so certainly now, maybe going forward, you're probably not going to see any impact. >> and i'm over time, but just one question, one more question. on the government number, can you tell us what the overall government number, the decline has been, say from july to 2009 to july 2010 to now? in other words, over the last year over the last two years. in other words, how many government jobs have we lost? >> down about half a million jobs. >> thank you. vice chairman brady? >> thank you, chairman. i can't resist asking this. earlier this morninging when she the jobs numbers came out, one of the white house chief economic cheerleaders called these numbers fabulous. commissioner, would you call these numbers fabulous? >> i would say it's welcome to see the numbers, that the job growth increased, but no, they're not fabulous.
they're still not strong. >> can i ask him this as well? no, i'm kidding. you don't need to go there. i agree. i think it provided us some relief, only because we were so worried about, especially in the last few days, where this economy is headed. it's no secret i'm want a big fan of stimulus. a lot of money, a lot of debt, few jobs, the impact was pretty minor and pretty limited. we were told unemployment would be about 6.3% today, way off it. there are about six million jobs short of the claims we would have, new jobs if we passed that stimulus, so i felt like, continue to feel like we were told to take the debt, you'll get jobs. certainly got the debt, and now that, too, is a drag on our economy, on business confidence, on family confidence. when you look at the job gains in today's report, you know,
one view of the job market is that, as layoffs return to what they were before the recession, the job numbers improved, because there were more hires, but new hires have increased very little. they're far below what it was before the recession. so it means premature to speak of a real job market recovery to begin with and the meager job gains recently really aren't a surprise. this is an argument that that the former council of economic advisors chairman makes, and i agree with that. as you look at this report, commissioner, is there a way to distinguish between job gains that result from fewer people leaving their jobs and job gains from a sustained increase in hiring? because they send significantly different signals of the health
of our labor market. >> we do collect data -- we call them gross flows, where we look at how many people are exiting jobs, how many people are entering the maybe market. and actually, your observation is correct. most of the improvement has been that the number of people losing jobs has leveled out and stopped going down, but we haven't yet gotten a significant increase in the number of people entering the employed. >> the second portion is critical. the fact that that is struggling, is that also why we have fewer people in that market while we again had 190,000 step back out of the labor market this month? >> yeah, i think that's consistent with what i mentioned about the labor force. i think one of the things we need to see at some point is the labor force growing because people think they're going get jobs, and people are going to start to expect, reasonably expect they're going to move
from unemployed to employed, and that hasn't happened yet. >> i noticed that retail jobs are up slightly in the report, but recent reports have consumer spending and consumption down for the first time in a long time. why is that? is there a mismatch there or maybe a timing issue because of when the survey was taken versus the latest data? >> there's certainly a timing issue. this is some of the very earliest data we have for july, and this is the start of the third quarter, and the consumer spending numbers are back from, say, the second quarter. so there is a timing issue there. >> what kind of seasonal adjustments do you make this time of year in the jobs report? >> sort of depends by industry. for example, in motor vehicle production, there's a pretty food seasonal because plants often close down in july to retail, and they reopen in august. so there's a part of it there.
there's teachers around this time period, june and july. they leave the labor market for the summer, so we have a seasonal there. last month's seasonal was actually really big. that one overall was about a million, so we expect the empty to go down by a million because of seasonal job loss in june. >> so you adjust for that? >> we adjust for that. >> the seasonal this month is not quite so big. >> good. thank you. >> congressman cummings? >> you think that, you know, when you look at the rate of, say, loss of government jobs, how is that when you look at that as a portion of all jobs lost, is it trending pretty much the same over, say, the last year or so? in other words, the percentage. you follow my question? in other words, if you lose 50,000 jobs and 10,000 of them
are government, is that 20% pretty much the norm for the last, say, several months or year? >> yeah, but for example, over the last two years, we've grown about 700,000 jobs, but we've lost about half a million government jobs, so the job growth would have been not double, but it would have been close to double what it has been without the loss of government jobs. >> i also heard one of john mccain, the first people who say he was john mccain's advisor, now john mccain, senator mccain has made it clear he was one of his advisors during the campaign. so one of his advisors, mr. zandy, i also heard his comments this morning, and one of the things he says is we got to move from cutting to
creating, creating jobs. i'm just trying to figure out, if we continue to go at the rate we're going, in other words, if we don't have -- we don't come one methodologies to create jobs and push that, we're going to find ourselves in some real difficulty, and we can only slide downward. and i don't want to see that happen, but i know the numbers aren't great, but can you tell us, what would you tell the president today? if he called you right now and said, you know, i usually don't bother you, but since he's leaving, can you all get on the phone and tell me what the deal is? what would you say? >> well, i would say that it is, of course, welcome news that the job growth has accelerated for over the last two months, so that is good news.
but it's not yet strong. in fact, this is pretty helped job growth. and going forward, we really are going to have to do better in job growth in order to start to really recover in the labor market. >> and the african-american numbers are pretty stubborn, aren't they? >> yes, they are. >> what about the hispanic numbers? >> the unemployment rate is there, above average, too. that's about 11.3%. let me just mention, those unemployment rates, to some degree, underestimate the problem, because the labor force participation rates for both those groups are below average as well, so actually, they sound bad, but it actually may be worse than it sounds. >> i would venture a guess that there's some areas in my district where the african-american male unemployment rate may be as much as 50%. and so, whenever i see those
numbers, you know, i say to myself that they are probably very, very low. the chairman talked briefly about this whole correlation between the amount of education and the impact that this recession has had on folks. do you see that trend continuing? in other words, the less education you have, the more negative impact the recession has on folks? >> yeah, absolutely. for example, the unemployment rate for those with less than a high school diploma is about 15%. for those with a bachelor's degree or higher, it's only about 4%. that's a pretty significant difference. >> finally, let me ask you this. i always ask you if someone was watching us right now and they were trying to figure out where they might -- what kind of
field they might want to go into, what kind of training they might want to get, what area they might want to move to to get a job, what would you say, just based upon -- i know you don't like to go draw a lot of conclusions, i know, but just tell me, based on what you have there in front of you, what would you say? >> well, obviously education pays off and is very important. the united states is like other wealthy countries. we are a country of service jobs, service-providing jobs. something like 70% to 80% of our jobs are, in fact, in the service providing sector. so that's important. and then you get into, of course, some of the things like some of the demographics that we've got going on, a lot of the healthcare jobs are, i would expect, are going to have strong growth going forward, as
we have an aging population, some things like that. that's the sort of thing, the sort of advice i would give. >> thank you very much. >> unless there are further questions, commissioner hall, we're grateful for your testimony. and you your colleagues, we said hello earlier. we hope you can come back here in your years of retirement. you said you were going to be fishing a lot. if you can squeeze in a couple of hearings between fishing, we'd love to have you back. but unless there are any further questions or comments, we're adjourned. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2011] [no audio]
>> next week, we'll look at the jobs situation in america. we'll start on monday with the labor department's workforce training program. tuesday, the focus is on technical education and the workforce. wednesday, a look at private-public partnerships and job creation. and on thursday, we'll have an assessment of key federal jobs programs. friday, opportunities for women in the workforce. "washington journal" is live every day at 7:00 a.m. eastern right here on c-span. during a visit to the navy yard in washington, d.c., president obama announced an initiative to help unemployed veterans find jobs. the unemployment rate among veterans is 4% higher than the national average and is expected to rise as u.s. troops return from afghanistan. the president also talked about the latest jobs report, showing unemployment dropped to 9.1% in july. this is about 25 minutes.
>> on behalf of our men and women in uniform and their families, some of whom join us here today, thank you for being here. and welcome to the washington navy yard. our navy's oldest shore establishment. for those of you who don't know, this is a special place in american history. through war and through peace, sailors, civilians, naval architects and businessmen came together at the navy yard to build and repair america's fleets. here, opportunity was created and innovation rewarded. here was spent the great sweat and muscle of our overseas security. not far from where we gather,
u.s.s. constitution, old ironside herself, was brought in for repairs during the war of 1812. the navy yard manufactured the mammoth 16-inch guns atop the decks of our world war ii battleships. and here, scientists and engineers fashioned the optical components that made possible the great accuracy of those guns. and so it is fitting indeed that the president announces a new initiative to put the muscle and intellect of a new generation of veterans to work again. many of these young people have served five, six, even seven tours in combat. some of them suffer from serious wounds, seen and unseen. all of them want the chance to pursue the same dreams every other american pursues. i think back to a young man i
met in los angeles a couple of years ago. he fought in afghanistan, was fresh out of the army, unemployed, and homeless. he told me, i gave my country 100%. all i ask for is 100% in return. that doesn't seem like too much to ask, a job and education, a roof over your head, food on the table. what our troops need when they come home is more than yellow ribbons, parades, and an open heart. they need an open hand. one of the best ways to extend that hand, to truly honor a veteran, is to hire one. with the right support, the right opportunities, our veterans and their families will not only make incredible contributions to the work place, but also to their communities as well. they're smart, tech-savvy, wired to serve, and great
leaders. they will make terrific employees, and i can tell you this, they darn sure know how to show up on time. the problem is once they leave the service, they can be hard to find and tough to identify. i'm convinced there is a sea of goodwill out there, of people and organizations, i'ller to help. but there's no easy way to connect our young vets with the employers and community leaders and community organizers who remain so critical to making and sustaining those relationships. so i'm pleased and extremely grateful that president obama has focused all of us on doing just that, finding ways to make sure our veterans have the tools they need for success after service and the jobs they need to continue their lives after they have done and given so much for us. he and the first lady have devoted an extraordinary amount of time and personal leadership
to this endeavor. through programs like this one and their wider joining forces initiative, our first family is doing everything they can to put our military family first. they're doing everything they can to give back that 100%. the president has made our troops and their families his top priority, and he's backed that up day in and day out with real and substantial changes and the resources to make those changes work. i've seen him labor hard over these initiatives and worry about them and drive us all to better measures of success. he is nothing if not passionate, and yet somehow he doesn't look a day over 50.
>> well, thank you very much, everybody. good morning. i'm glad somebody told me that was the last one, because i lost count. it is great to be here at the navy yard, and first of all, i want to thank admirable mullen for being here and for his four decades of extraordinary service to this country. and i want to thank him for saying that, for an old guy, i look ok. i appreciate that. this may be one of the oldest ship yards in the united states. but today, it's used to develop some of the most advanced technology in the military. although i hear your engineers are still working on a solution
to the traffic when the nationals are playing. that's not ready yet. let me start by saying a few words about our economy. there is no doubt this has been a tumultuous year, that we've weathered the arab spring effect on oil and gas prices. the japanese earthquake and tsunami's effect on supply chains, the extraordinary economic uncertainty in europe, and recently markets around the globe have taken a bumpy ride. my concern right now, my singular focus american people, getting the unemployed back on the job, lifting their wages, rebuilding that sense of security the middle class has felt slipping away for years, and helping them recover fully as families and as communities
from the worst recession that any of us have ever seen. today we know that our economy created 154,000 new private-sector jobs in july. that's the strongest pace since april. the unemployment rate went down, not up. but while this marks the 17th month in a row of job growth in the private sector, nearly 2.5 million new private sector jobs in all, we have to create more jobs than that each month to maybe up for more the cycle are spending and companies are hiring and our economy is growing. we've known that will take some time. but what i want the american people and our partners and the world to know is this -- we are going to get through this.
things will get better. we're going to get there together. the bipartisan compromise on deficit reduction was important in terms of putting us on sounder fiscal footing going forward. but let's be honest, the process was delayed, divisive. if we want our businesses to have the confidence they need to get cash off the sidelines and invest and hire, we got to do better than that. we've got to be able to work together, to grow the economy right now and strengthen our long-term finances. that's what the american people expect of us. leaders that can put aside our differences to meet our challenges. so when congress gets back in september, i want to move quickly on things that will help the economy create jobs right now. extending the payroll tax credit put $1,000 in the pocket of the average worker, extending unemployment insurance to help people get
back on their feet, putting construction workers back to work, rebuilding america. those are all steps that we can take right now that will make a difference, and there's no contradiction between us taking some steps to put people to work right now and getting our long-term fiscal house in order. in fact, the more we grow, the easier it will be to reduce our deficits. both parties share power. both parties share responsibility for our progress. moving our economy and country forward is not a democratic or republican responsibility. it is -- it's not a private or public responsibility. it is the responsibility of all americans. it's in our nature to do the tough things when necessary, to do the right things when called. that's the spirit that washington needs right now. it's also the kind of spirit found in the men and women who probably serve in our country's
uniform. it's a spirit that endures long after they take those uniforms off. today's veterans are americans who have done their duties. they have fought our wars with valor in vietnam to iraq and afghanistan. they include the members of today's military, the 9/11 generation, some of whom are here today. they volunteer to serve in a time of war, knowing they would be sent into harm's way. to these men and women, i want to say that all of you have served our country with honor. over the last decade, you've performed heroically and done everything we have asked of you in some of the most dangerous places on the planet. your generation has earned a special place in american history. today, nearly three million
extraordinary service members like you have completed their service and made the transition back to civilian life. they've taken their leadership experience, their mastery of cutting-edge technologies, their ability to adapt to changing circumstances, and they've become leaders here at home. just think about how many veterans have let their comrades on missions by the time they were 25 years old. that's the kind of responsibility and experience that any business in america should want to take advantage of. these veterans are already making an impact, making companies and communities stronger. but for every success story, there are also stories of veterans who come home and struggle to find a job worthy of they are experience and worthy of their talent. veterans like nick coleman. when nick was in afghanistan, he served as a combat medic with the 82nd airborne. over the course of his
deployment, nick saved the life of a french soldier who was shot in the head and helped 42 people escape from a flooding river. he earned a bronze star for his actions. but when nick got back home to wyoming, he couldn't get a job as a first responder. so he ended up having to take classes through the post-9/11 g.i. bill, classes he easily could have taught, just so he could qualify for the same duties at home that he was doing every single day in afghanistan. they're veterans like maria. she was a financial specialist in the army, helping to provide financial support for her unit in iraq. and when she got home, she finished earning her degree in business management. but even with her education and her experience in the army, maria still couldn't find a steady working job in
accounting or finance. that isn't right. it doesn't make any sense, not for our veterans, not for the strength of our country. if you can save a life in afghanistan, you can safe a life in an ambulance in wyoming. if you can oversee millions of dollars in assets in iraq, you can help a business balance its books here at home. our incredible service men and women need to know that america values them not simply for what they can do in uniform, but for what they can do when they come home. we need them to keep making america stronger. our countries need skilled workers like our veterans to grow. there's no reason why we can't connect the two. keeping our commitments to our veterans has been one of my top priorities as commander in chief. that includes helping them make the transition back to civilian
life. that's why we're fully funding the post-9/11 g.i. bill, which is helping more than 500,000 veterans and their family members pursue a college education. that's why we supported extending the bill that includes noncollege degrees and on the job and apprenticeship training. that's why i directed the federal government to be a model employer and hire more veterans, including more than 100,000 in the past year and a half alone. so today we're taking it a step further. first, we need to do more to make the transition from military to civilian life easier for our veterans. that's why i'm directing the department of defense and veterans affairs to design what we're calling a reverse boot camp. the problem is that, right now, we've spent months preparing our men and women for life in the military, but we spent much
less time for preparing them for life after they get out. we'll devote more time and learn about our benefits to how they can translate their military training into an industry-accepted credential. in addition, we'll make it easier for veterans to go to their local one-stop career center and get help pursuing a career that fits them best. these steps will help bridge part of the gap between veterans looking for work and companies looking to hire. that's only part of the equation. the other half is about encouraging companies to do their job. that's why i'm proposing a new returning heroes tax credit for companies hiring veterans. i'm proposing an increase in the existing tax credit for companies who hire unemployed veterans with a disability, who still have so much to offer our country. finally, we're challenging the private sector to hire or train
100,000 unemployed post-9/11 veterans or their spouses by the end of 2013. this bill is on commitment to companies have made as part of the joining forces campaign championed by my wife, michelle, and dr. jill biden. sea mens hired 300 veterans, so they're aiming to hire more by december. microsoft is helping more than 10,000 veterans get i.t. certified over the next two years. and today, groups from the u.s. chamber of commerce to accenture to lockheed martin have all agreed to do their part to help veterans get back in the workforce. the bottom line is this -- we still have a long way to go and a lot of work to do to get folks the economic security and opportunity they deserve. and that begins with connecting
americans looking for work, including our veterans, with employers looking to hire. over the last few years, another generation of young veterans has learned that the challenges don't end in kandahar or baghdad. they continue right here at home. today we're saying to our veterans, you fought for us, and now we're fighting for you. but the jobs and opportunities that you need to keep your families strong and keep america competitive in the 21st century, and at a time when there's so much work to be done in this country, we need everyone's help to do it. so thank you. god bless you. god bless all our services, and god bless the united states of america. [captioning performed by national captioning institute]
reporter about what it means. neil irwin writes about economics for the "washington post." he joins us by phone to talk about the downgrade for the first time in history of u.s. credit by the agency, standard & poor's. why did s&p drop the rating? >> the u.s. government has the political will and the kind of discipline policymaking to deal with our debt problem and deal with it in a responsible way, and as a result, they feel we're no longer a a.a.a. rating, no longer an ultrasafe form of debt for investors around the globe to hold, so they downgraded. >> what about the congressional debt deficit bill on tuesday? did that have any effect here? >> well, the bill was passed. if it had not pass and had we had dwault on our debt, that would have been even worse. but they felt the process that got there was not one that suggested there's going to be a reasoned and studied progress toward deficit reduction over
time. it's not that the u.s. is incapable of paying its debts, the problem they identified is we make lack the political will, the governance to have good political decision making to get there and arrive there in an orderly way. >> how is this going to affect interest rates? >> we don't know for sure. we'll find out starting next week when the markets open monday morning. but it's hard to imagine it will be good for interest rates. what could very well happen is global investors say, you know, maybe this is no longer a.a.a. asset, maybe i want to demand a higher interest rate to hold this debt, so it might mean the u.s. government has to pay more to borrow money, and that trends to trickle through to other borrowers. so if you're trying to get a mortgage, if you're trying to take out a loan, this could translate into higher interest rates across the board. >> what about the other rating agencies? >> they have so far not been indelood. standard & poor's has been others. the question is what it would take for the others to take the
same approach and also downgrade. we don't know what that looks like, but if we continue to have a very divisive political process and an unwillingness in washington to arise at a deficit reduction approach and strategy, then you can imagine the other rating agencies cutting their ratings as well. >> we were at a.a.a. we're now at a.a. plus. what would need to happen to get that a.a.a. rating back? >> it's hard to know. these are very -- we don't know for sure exactly what the line is for standard & poor's, what they would need to see to change their mind. historically, when a country has been downgraded, it takes time. it's want as if you can be downgrade and had then a month later it gets reversed. these tend to be multiyear processes. the question is, do we, over the next few years in the united states government, is there a process that's better? >> what kind of impact do you think this could have on the international economy?
>> it's again hard to say. we've never seen this before. we don't know quite what will happen. what we do know is that when there's disruption to financial systems, it's hard to predict. when lele went bankrupt in september 2008, there was no obvious reasons that should have caused a global financial crisis, and yet it did. and u.s. treasury bonds are deeply entrenched across the world financial systems in all kinds of different ways, so people in the government are not expecting some kind of economic collapse starting next week, but they are nervous and know that there's a lot we don't know about how this will play out. >> neil irwin with "the washington post," thanks for your time. >> thanks for having me. >> next, live, your calls and comments on "washington journal." then a senate hearing on rising healthcare costs. after that, executives from the nfl and the nba talk about the impact of collective bargaining. >> the house of representatives has been off eight weeks
already this year, including this week. did you get eight weeks of vacation so far this year? because i sure didn't. >> on her nightly tv show, alyona minkovski tries to take a slightly more irreverent view on washington and the u.s. >> we're willing to step outside the box, we're willing to try something different, figure out how to make tv news exciting and entertaining and informative again rather than, i'm sorry, but like i said, the garbage that it's dwindled down to be. >> she'll talk about her network and her show, sunday night on c-span's "q&a." >> six, eight, nine. >> nine, eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one.
these are the stakes to make a world in which all of god's children can live. or to go into the dark. we must either love each other or we must die. >> vote for president johnson on november 3. >> this weekend, we'll look at the history of political campaign ads with l.s.u. professor robert mann, also former homicide detective james lavell on the day jack ruby killed the man under his protection, lee harvey oswald, and former speech writers for president nixon reveal how his messages were crafted and communicated. "american history tv" on c-span3. get the complete weekend schedule at c-span.org/history. >> this morning, atlantic associate editor discusses july's job report and the overall economy. then mark acton of the u.s. regulatoryta